Have you ever tried real Chuncheon-Style Dak Galbi (Spicy Grilled Chicken)? Or better yet, have you ever tried the more popular version of Dak Galbi (Spicy Chicken w Vegetables)? If you haven’t, I found a place where you can experience both of these delicious dishes.
Open for only three months, Myungpoom Chunha in Nohyeong-dong (Shin Jeju) specializes in original dak galbi straight from Chuncheon. The owners are native Chuncheon residents and have brought their time-tested recipes over to Jeju Island. Here’s a small sample how they’re representing Chuncheon with their delicious dak galbi:
- The owners are native Chuncheon residents who honed their craft for 3 years before making the big move to Jeju Island.
- All chickens are sourced from Chuncheon with the owner’s mother-in-law prepping (손질) all the chicken before being sent over from the mainland.
- The chicken are “fresh,” meaning they do not use frozen chicken.
- All sauces are made in-house with new sauces being continuously improved and developed (개발).
- All ingredients and inventory are domestic products.
- Here, you will find no cheese whatsoever, which is a very good thing.
Having had this dish personally many times, I suggested to my group of friends to order the original Chuncheon-Style Sutbul Dak Galbi (Charcoal Grilled Chicken) because they had never eaten the original. The original Chuncheon dak galbi used to be different (started way back in the 60s) where restaurants cooked the chicken on thin wire grills over charcoal; they do the exact same thing here plus add in their own unique flavors: spicy, mild, and salted (we got one order of each). Nowadays though, we refer to Chuncheon dak galbi as spicy chicken stir fried with other vegetables in a large round metal griddle called bulpan. To our satisfaction, the charcoal version was to everyone’s liking. It took slightly longer to grill (despite help from the kind owner/waitress), but in the end we really enjoyed the tender, moist pieces of chicken that were flavored just right. All the banchan (side dishes) and various dipping sauces also complimented the grilled chicken very nicely. Needless to say, my friends and I thoroughly enjoyed our meal and have planned to try out the modernized version in the weeks ahead. 🙂
Dak Galbi 101: This popular dish is prepared by marinating chunks of chicken in a gochujang-based sauce (spicy red pepper paste) with other seasonings overnight. Common ingredients include a mix of cabbage, green onions, perilla leaves, sweet potatoes, and rice cakes, where they’re added to a large cast iron griddle. The mixture is then typically stir-fried at the table right in front of you and it’s shared with everyone. Dak galbi can be enjoyed on its own or wrapped in lettuce leaves for a fresh, crunchy taste. After most of the dak galbi has been eaten, rice and seasonings are then stir-fried with the remaining sauce in the pan to make bokkeumbap (fried rice). You’ll find many dak galbi restaurants concentrated near university campuses as it’s a popular dish among university students who are on a tight budget and need a good source of sustenance.
“Is this chicken, what I have, or is this fish? I know it’s tuna, but it says ‘Chicken of the Sea.” ~ Jessica Simpson
Food ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Service: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Ambiance: ★★★★½ out of 5 stars
Value: ★★★★ out of 5 stars
Myungpoom Chunha (명품천하)
710-3 Nohyeong-dong, Jeju City (제주시 노형동 710-3)
Hours: Open 10:00am ~ 12 midnight daily
Directions via Naver map: http://me2.do/xCaOKT4n